Temperatures spiked to new national highs in parts of India, Kuwait and Iran, while sea ice melted faster than ever in the fragile Arctic, said the report by the National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration.
The planet's average surface temperature has risen by about 0.99°C (1.78°F) since the mid-20th century - a change that has been brought on by increased carbon dioxide and greenhouse gas emissions from human activities.
The Northern Hemisphere was also the warmest on record past year with an average temperature departure of +1.27 C, which beats out the previous record of +1.13 C set in 2015. NASA attributes a 0.5 ˚C boost to El Niño in 2015 and a 0.12 ˚C boost in 2016 - just a fraction of the total temperature change.
Prior to 2014, temperature records were set in 2010 and 2005. The record warmth in 2016 was broadly spread around the world. The temperature burst between 2013 and 2016 - about half a degree globally in total - was the largest change in a three year period measured on the planet's surface since 1880.
WMO has linked weather-related events to conclusions by the International Organization for Migration (IOM) and the Office of the UN High Commissioner for Refugees (UNHCR), which recently reported 19.2 million new displacements due to weather, water, climate and geophysical hazards in 113 countries in 2015.
This video showing over 100 years of global warming will terrify you
For example, both NASA and NOAA found the 2016 annual mean temperature for the contiguous 48 United States was the second warmest on record.
One last graph for you: this one below shows how much global annual temperatures were above or below average from 1980 through 2016.
The NOAA and NASA reports came just two day before the inauguration of President-elect Donald Trump, who has called climate change a "hoax" and has threatened to pull the us out of the Paris Agreement that took effect past year. Past year is the warmest on record since data started being kept in 1880, and there is no sign the increase will slow down.
"2016 is remarkably the third record year in a row in this series", Gavin Schmidt, the director of NASA's Goddard Institute for Space Studies (GISS), said in a statement. NOAA scientists concur with the finding that 2016 was the warmest year on record based on separate, independent analyses of the data.
Of course, weather station locations and measurement practices have somewhat changed over time and do lead to some uncertainties in interpreting the data, but NASA monitors Earth's vital signs from land, air, and space with a fleet of satellites, as well as airborne and ground-based observation campaigns. In the United States, 2016 was the second-hottest year on record.
Meanwhile, Schmidt said that seeing another year with record-high temperatures in 2017 is "unlikely". But the long-term warming trend should continue to go up and, Arndt says, threatens new records nearly every year.